Thursday, 27 January 2011

Writing my Second Book: Behind the Scenes 1.

How to Paint Colour and Light in Watercolour
Launched at the Mall Galleries in 2010 

The decision to share each stage of writing my second book.

When I started writing my first book I was in the throws of a move and renovating a cottage. While writing my second book I thought it  may be a great idea to share its creative process and what goes on behind the scenes to show how much is involved in publishing the finished article. I also am aware this could be valuable information to anyone who is also considering writing a book of their own.

Finding a Publisher

Every author needs a publisher. One that has experience and excels as established in the literary world. I am so fortunate to be an author for Search Press as they are an incredible company. I am overwhelmed with the support and guidance I have recieved from the very first day I met them. So to record the process of pulling this next book together will gradually introduce you to a team who are involved and helping make this exciting  new project one that will be filled with magic.

My Second Book: The Birth of an Idea

The idea for this new book came long before my first book " How to Paint Colour and Light" was even  considered. However at a final meeting before my first book was about to go to print the suggestion of my second book with pages full of demonstrations,techniques and fabulous colour was born. And the minute it was excitement filled the air. Sometimes you just know something is going to be fantastic and we all know this is what we are about to create. Martin,Katie,Roz and I were aware we were onto something very special.

The Wait

Now we had the seed of an idea there was much to do in deciding how to go forward. The thinking process is as important as the actual writing and painting. If not more important as the ideas needed time to formulate. There was a long gap in the creative process as further suggestions were discussed and also my first book had yet to be launched which it was at the Mall galleries in London during the SWA, Society for Women Artists Annual Exhibition.

The First Meeting

Last Autumn saw my first meeting where each chapter is allocated title wise and the flow of the book is already in place. All I can say at this stage is that if I feel this excited about writing it I can't imagine how anyone who loves watercolour will feel when they actually read it. It is different,yes. But then there are already so many books available discussing already well known techniques. My workshops and demonstrations often  see those attending making a comment when they leave.They tell me I am a "Breath of Fresh Air" and that's what I want this next book to feel like.One that cannot be put down and one that is seriously highly recommended to all watercolorists.

So at what stage am I now?

It will take a full twelve months before we can give a date to when this book will be available because the journey into creating it has really just started. From the birth of an idea, to the first planning meeting. I am now working in my studio on techniques and ideas which I won't share online until the book is launched to add to the surprises it holds.

The First Photography Shoot

But yesterday a really exciting stage took place.The discussion for the very first photography shoot. This will be in March at the professional photographers who shot all the images in my first book. they are fantastic. I have now some very serious painting to do and some very quiet studio time to enjoy.

I am so over the moon in how this book is developing that I feel as though I am floating with excitement at times. Its going to be very hard keeping my feet on the ground this year. And I am not sure I am going to try!

So if my paintings seem happy,light with a sense of freedom over the next twelve months put that feeling down to sheer happiness.

I am over the moon!


"How to Paint Colour and Light in Watercolour" by Jean Haines is available from and other stockists.


Jenny said...

Hi Jean, I am really looking forward to your next book. I have really enjoyed your first book, which I got for christmas. Although I paint a lot with oils on canvas, I do occasionally dabble in watercolour painting which I love - and your book just inspires me in all my painting whether with oils or watercolours. I find your enthusiasm for painting infectious, and you may even have played no small part to my decsion to embark on a BA (hons) degree in Creative Arts with the OCA. You see I have painted for a long time, but have recently been diagnosed with a genetic eye condition - an early onset form of macular degeneration- which left me in a low place, especially in regards to my painting, however over the last few months I have started painting again, and things are now escalating fast! I am so excited about my future with painting and can't wait to start my degree, to give me focus. I just want to thank you, as one of the things I have found most encouraging is following your blog, and like I said before, your enthusiasm is indeed catching! Best wishes, Jenny x

Susan Roux said...

Jean I'm so excited for you. Congratulations! In the back of my mind there is a book that wants to come out... I'll be watching as you share your amazing journey.

Jean Haines SWA said...

Hello Jenny

I am so touched by your reply.

Thank you so much for sharing and I am genuinely so touched again to know my blog has inspired you.

I am an enthusiastic artist full of joy for life and the colour in it. I can't help but share this bubble of excitement that holds the feelings when I paint.To know this feeling is either helpful or enjoyed by others makes my life and sharing even more worthwhile.

I know many artists with less than perfect eyesight and a few have serious issues with how they can work but I am always so impressed by their creative artistic creations. They often have soft edges like no other artist I know and their flow of colour often is more remarkable in that they are not putting their whole focus on detail.

I do wish you well and I do hope we stay in touch,

Happy painting Jenny and thank you so much for being here,


Jean Haines SWA said...

Hello Susan

Thank you for such a wonderful reply.Please write all yoru ideas down while they are fresh and exciting and hopefully I will be following your writing and journey too soon,

Thank you so much for replying and please let me know if you do embark on writing you rbook,


Jenny said...

Thank you for your comments, Jean. It is always encouraging to me to hear about other artists with visual impairments that paint sucessfully. Thank you for sharing that with me. Jenny x